Thursday, February 15, 2007

Actual News...Digested

In case you are looking here before wading through all the primary and secondary sources, the only apparent plum from Thursday's activity in Tanzania is a report from (and this is awkward) the group appointed by the Joint Standing Committee of the Primates' Meetings and the Anglican Consultative Council to advise the Archbishop of Canterbury on the adequacy of General Convention's response to the requests of the Windsor Report.

Got all that?

Here's what they said, in a nutshell (of my own design): Expression of Regret? Check. Moratorium on Partnered Gay Bishops? Check (a generous construction of B033). Moratorium on Same-Sex Blessings? Not so much.

On the last point, the report goes into a fair amount of detail, pointing out that while General Convention failed to act on the issue (having defeated the omnibus A161 in the House of Deputies), several proposals that would have affirmed same-sex blessings died in committee, and never made it to the floor of either house. De-merits for the former, points for the latter, the report seems to say, so it's kind of a wash. It also reminds the readers that only 16 or so of the 111 dioceses are proceeding with some form of authorizing same-sex blessings.

Oh...and there's a thinly-veiled slap on the wrist to border-crossing Global South bishops.

Initial reaction is pleased relief from the left, and nervous concern on the right. But remember: It's just a report. The Primates can do whatever they want with it.

This picture, found on the Anglican Communion News Service website, is interesting beyond words. From left to right (more accurately, from his own right, then proceeding leftward!): Bishop Duncan of Pittsburgh, Bishop Epting the of '815' staff, the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Presiding Bishop, and Bishop McPherson of Western Louisiana.

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